Surrey Global Health Research Network (SGHRN)

About us

Surrey Global Health Research Network (SGHRN) was formed to establish a network of researchers and collaborators from the UK and priority areas around the world so that the partner overseas institutions and Surrey Health Economics Centre (SHEC) could support global health research initiatives and healthcare challenges.

The network will therefore help researchers take advantage of the increasing funding opportunities following UK Government’s comprehensive review in 2015 which has given focus to global health research.

The objectives of this network are to:

  • Facilitate bidding for UK global health research funding
  • Create a platform for resource sharing and knowledge transfer
  • Create training opportunities and exchange visits both in UK and developing countries.

The network is being coordinated by Surrey Health Economics Centre (SHEC). SHEC provides economics support to all forms of research in applied multidisciplinary research in health and social care, mainly in the UK and with partners from other European countries.  


Dr Victor Del Rio Vilas used to with the Department of Epidemiology in the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Surrey where he was a lecturer and involved in many international projects. Dr Del Rio Vilas has now joined the World Health Organisation (WHO) working at the South East Asia regional office in Delhi, India. He had previously worked at the WHO serving as a consultant with the Pan American Health Organisation in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Victor continues to have links with the University of Surrey being engaged in various research initiatives. He is also a member of Chatham House, London, UK at the Centre on Global Health Security where he is working with the African Union’s Centre for Disease Control.

Dr Bernadette Egan graduated with a 1st Class honours degree in Biochemistry and a PhD from University College Cork (UCC), Ireland. She then joined the Microbiology Department at the University of Surrey, working on a number of projects in the area of food microbiology. Dr Egan is currently the Deputy Director of the RDS SE and the Surrey Academic lead.

Bernadette has extensive experience of supporting researchers with all aspects of preparing applications for applied health research funding. Bernadette is also a Senior Research Fellow in the Food, Consumer Behaviour and Health Research Centre at the University of Surrey, where she has worked on a variety of projects primarily in the area of public health nutrition. She has considerable experience of using both qualitative and quantitative research methods and is very experienced in project management, the development of study protocols, data collection, data analysis and reporting.

Dr Obinna Ekwunife is a pharmacist and a public health scientist. He is a senior lecturer in the Department of Clinical Pharmacy and Pharmacy Management, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Nigeria. He coordinates the Research Group for Evidence Based Health Care. His research focuses on establishing optimal and efficient use of pharmaceuticals and health technologies applying pharmacoeconomics and evidence based medicine research methods. He is also interested in health service research and clinical trials. He has over 30 publications in international scientific journals and is member of a number of scientific organisations including Nigerian Young Academy (NYA) and African Research Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases (ARNTD). He has won some grants including Georg Forster Research Fellowship (Alexander von Humboldt Foundation) and European and Developing Clinical Trial Partnership (EDCTP) Career Development Fellowship.

Dr Mohammed Fasihul Alam has more than 20 years of experience in research and academic teaching in Health Economics, Statistics, Operational Research and Decision Modelling. He has a PhD in Operational Research, an MSc in Health Economics and Health Policy and in Statistics. He currently work for Qatar University in the College of Health Sciences as Assistant Professor where he is also involved in public health research. Before joining Qatar University, he also worked for University of South Wales, Swansea University and University of Chittagong. He has taught health economics and decision modelling on graduate and post-graduate levels courses at Cardiff and Swansea Universities, and is currently co-supervising PhD projects.

Professor Heather Gage is the Director of the Surrey Health Economics Centre in which role she oversees a portfolio of externally funded research covering many aspects of health and social care.  Heather's research interests encompass many aspects of health service delivery, but particularly focus on evaluative studies and outcomes measurement. She has published over 100 articles in international peer reviewed health, clinical and medical journals. She has held visiting positions at the Boston University School of Public Health and the Center for Health Quality, Outcomes and Economic Research of the US Veterans Healthcare Administration.

Dr Bridget Jones is a chartered Health Psychologist, registered practitioner in the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and a fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Her first degree (BSc) is in Food, Nutrition and Marketing, and she worked for many years as an editor before completing an MSc in Health Psychology and a PhD focusing on coping responses among people diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Within the Surrey Health Economics Centre, Bridget has worked on projects related to early onset dementia and she is currently the manager on a project concerned with the workforce in British general practice.

Dr Florence Okwara is a practising paediatrician and works for Kenyatta University in Nairobi, Kenya where she is involved teaching of paediatrics and child Health and clinical pharmacology. She coordinates the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health in the University. She was previously a consultant paediatrician for the Nairobi Hospital. She also worked for the Kenya’s Ministry of Health in various positions / capacities. Her research interests include infectious diseases, tropical diseases, paediatric tuberculosis and paediatric HIV. She is currently at the University of Cape Town in South Africa undertaking sub-specialist fellowship training in developmental paediatrics.

Professor Sergio Recuenco is a medical epidemiologist, and a Doctor of Public Health. His professional specialisations focus on spatial epidemiology, zoonoses and diseases with human-animal interface. He is an international expert in rabies and is an author of chapters of books and scientific articles on rabies and spatial epidemiology of zoonoses. He is currently a Professor at Departamento de Medicina Preventiva y Salud Pública, Facultad de Medicina San Fernando, Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos in Peru. He is also an Associate Researcher at Centro de Investigaciones Tecnológicas, Biomédicas y Medioambientales (CITBM), Peru. He has previously worked in in the New York State Department of Health and for the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention in US.

Dr Bismark Sarfo is currently the head of the Department of Epidemiology and Disease Control at University of Ghana. He has been involved in and led the implementation of many multidisciplinary research projects including in HIV/AIDS, malaria, and trypanosomiasis. He conducted a study to evaluate the clinical and behavioural characteristics of patients receiving medical care for HIV/AIDS at Pantang ART centre in Ghana. He has previously worked with the HIV/AIDS Surveillance Unit of the Georgia Department of Public Health in the USA in the Medical Monitoring Project. BS is interested in infectious diseases research; data driven epidemiological, immunological and laboratory based research into infectious diseases, especially HIV/AIDS and malaria etc.

Nicholas Tendongfor: Holder of a PhD in Microbiology and MSc in Biostatistics/Epidemiology and Public Health Methodology. He is a researcher and associate professor of Microbiology, Head of Department of Public Health and Hygiene, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Buea, Cameroon. He is a fellow and founding member of the African Network for Research on Neglected Tropical Diseases (ARNTD). Up to 2013 he served as director of research program at the Research Foundation for Tropical Diseases and Environment (REFOTDE), Buea, Cameroon involved in the implementation of many research projects on neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs). He has contributed to the fight against neglected tropical diseases in the WHO/AFRO region serving as WHO facilitator for in-country capacity building, mapping of NTDs, development and costing of NTD strategic plans. His research interest is on infectious diseases, with a focus on the diagnosis and impact of health education and community empowerment in the control of infectious diseases.

Dr Morro ML Touray is originally from The Gambia, West Africa where he has also worked and was involved in a number of research projects. He was a member of the pneumococcal polysaccharide conjugate vaccine trial with the Medical Research Council (UK) Laboratories. In the UK, he has worked at the University of South Wales, Swansea University and now University of Surrey where he is involved in various multidisciplinary public health research and clinical trials. His research interests include interest in economic analysis along clinical trials; global health; zoonotic, tropical and infectious diseases; health policy and systems in low income and developing countries; health services and health outcomes research; health technology assessment; and evidence synthesis for decision making in healthcare.

Contact us

Please contact Dr Morro ML Touray:

Phone: +44 (0) 1483 688614